If a tenant-at-will does not provide a 30 day notice, cana landlorduse the security deposit to cover the remaining days?

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If a tenant-at-will does not provide a 30 day notice, cana landlorduse the security deposit to cover the remaining days?

Our tenants gave notice on the 26th of the month and moved out on the 2nd of the following month. We feel we should be able to keep an amount equal to the remaining days, minus the days that were covered by the previous month.

Asked on September 7, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Maine

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Whenever any tenants stop paying rent (because that's the real issue; not whether or not the tenants physically moved out), the landlord may, at the conclusion or termination of the tenancy, use their security deposit to cover any unpaid rent due and owing. For a month to month tenancy, if the tenant does not provide sufficient notice, the tenant is obligated for the remaining time on the 30 day notice period; thus, if a tenant only gave 1 week notice, the landlord is still owed another 3 weeks of rent. In that case, the landlord could use the security deposit to pay the unpaid 3 week rent.

Before doing this, though, check to see if there is any damage you need the deposit to pay for; if there is, and the deposit is not large for damage and rent both, you will need to sue the tenant for the additional amount owed.


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